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About me

I concentrate on three things in my legal practice.


First, I fix broken businesses.  I advise businesses on filing bankruptcy and help businesses negotiate with lenders or taxing authorities.  Sometimes I use my legal skills to help a business analyze its financial, operational, and management issues in order to decide whether to stay in business and how to continue in business going forward.


Second, I help businesses and individuals that are owed money.  I represent suppliers or landlords when customers or tenants file bankruptcy, sometimes in committee groups in Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases.  I file suits to help lenders recover collateral or to help clients collect receivables.  I help clients make and defend claims in bankruptcy court.  I handle state law receiverships and assignments for the benefit of creditors and represent clients in litigation matters like mechanic's lien suits, foreclosures and consumer finance litigation defense.  I offer customized training on bankruptcy and collections, including compliance training to help clients avoid minimize liability in those areas.


Third, I help businesses and individuals that owe money in many contexts.  I represent parties in preference litigation and other actions that only exist under the Bankruptcy Code.  I work with clients' creditors to restructure debts and negotiate payment arrangements.  


I work to provide options for businesses and individuals that are in or dealing with other parties in financial distress.  Dealing with money can be difficult and stressful for everyone from a family facing foreclosure to a $500M business that lacks sufficient working capital.  As a financial law professional, I help my clients respond to and overcome these difficulties.


Because some of my clients are individuals, federal law requires that I state that I am a debt relief agency and that, in that capacity, I help people file for bankruptcy relief under the United States Bankruptcy Code.


Languages spoken: English, French

Contact info

Summers Compton Wells LLC

8909 Ladue Rd
Saint Louis, MO, 63124-2075

Practice areas


  1. Chapter 11: 50%
  2. Litigation: 20%
  3. Real Estate: 15%
  4. Chapter 7: 10%
  5. Chapter 13: 5%

Attorney endorsements

2 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • James Nymark Fendelman

    I have litigated with and against Ms. Clair for years. She has a great eye for detail and an expansive knowledge of the Bankruptcy Code. As co-counsel, I know I can count on her to do absolutely everything in her power to ethically and zealously advance the interest of the client. As opposing counsel, she forces me to be absolutely at the top of my game or else suffer the consequences. She is a resource for me on finer details of the Bankruptcy Code, and whether we are on the same side or opposing sides, she is always extremely professional and organized. I have referred her valued clients of mine and I always receive excellent reports on her service. I strongly endorse Ms. Clair.


    James Fendelman Litigation Attorney
    Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter

  • Lloyd M. Nolan

    I endorse this lawyer. Bonnie is an excellent lawyer and one of the birghtest persons I have ever met. I would recommend her to anyone as an outstanding bankruptcy and litigation professional. She is also very charming.


    Lloyd Nolan Bankruptcy and debt Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community


NYCurrently registered 199903/07/2016
MOGood Standing, Active199401/08/2013
ILActive And Authorized To Practice Law199305/11/2016
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
BV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2015
Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor RightsSuperLawyers2015
Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor RightsSuperLawyers2014
BV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2014
Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor RightsSuperLawyers2013
BV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2013
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PrincipalSummers Compton Wells LLC2004 - Present
AssociateSummers Compton Wells PC2002 - 2004
Assistant General CounselWells Fargo Financial, Inc.1997 - 2002
Attorney (Bankruptcy)United States Department of Justice - Office of the United States Trustee1993 - 1997
Association namePosition nameDuration
Missouri Bar, Fee Dispute Resolution CommitteeArbitrator/Mediator/Investigator2000 - Present
American Bankruptcy InstituteBusiness Reorganization and Consumer Bankruptcy Committees1995 - Present
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
In re Huling, 418 B.R. 335 (Bankr. E.D. Mo. 2009)Obtained grant of summary judgment avoiding lender's unperfected lien
In re Southern Ill. Railcar Co., 301 B.R. 305 (Bankr. S.D. Ill. 2002)Obtained ruling denying creditor's motion due to lack of perfected security interest
H.D. Smith Wholesale Drug Co. v. Morris, 362 S.W.3d 27 (Mo. App. 2012)On appeal, obtained order affirming judgment against guarantor
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) JournalSupreme Court Finally Takes Up Chapter 13 Confirmation Finality2015
American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI)ABI Volo Seventh Circuit Case Updates2014
American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI)ABI Volo Seventh Circuit Case Updates2012
American Bankruptcy Institute Health Care Committee NewsletterIs the Ombudsman for You?: 7 Hills Radiology and the Application of 11 U.S.C. § 3332007
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Washington University School of LawLawJD - Juris DoctorN/A
Duke UniversityPolitical Science/MusicA.B.N/A
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
UMKC Annual 15-Hour Review of the LawAnnual Bankruptcy Update2015
Annual Bankruptcy InstituteRecent Developments in Bankruptcy2015
UMKC Annual 15-Hour Review of the LawAnnual Bankruptcy Update2014
Eighth Circuit Regional MeetingJudicial Estoppel: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Courtroom2012